From Ted Bundy to Ed Gein, there’s an entire industry devoted to speculating why terrible men behave like monsters, delving into every denied hug and feeling of inadequacy as a method of understanding how history’s worst people became so awful. So it was only a matter of time before someone began speculating whether or not President Donald Trump, under whose watch 133,000 Americans and counting have died of covid-19, got enough hugs as a wee boy.
And according to a new memoir written by Donald Trump’s niece, Mary Trump, the answer is no. Like many a tabloid-fodder serial killer before him, Donald Trump did not get the requisite number of hugs men seem to require in order to learn not to kill people. In Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man, Trump says that Donald Trump’s father, Fred Sr. denied his son the “ability to develop and experience the entire spectrum of human emotion” by prohibiting any feeling beyond ruthlessness and greed. Among these childhood displays of the sociopathy America would one day come to know so well, Trump writes that her uncle hid toys from his siblings and threatened to demolish them while the siblings watched when they complained about the theft and paid someone to take his SATs so he could get into the University of Pennsylvania. He was also allegedly admitted to UPenn more on the business connections of his father than test scores or talent, an allegation fairly obvious—even without the book—to anyone without money or connections who has ever attempted to go to college. Meanwhile, Fred Trump Sr. mocked his other children for somehow developing the capacity to love under conditions that discouraged it and reportedly prided his son Donald’s capacity to be a “killer.”
But just like Ted Bundy, regardless of the hugs he did or didn’t receive as a child, wouldn’t have been able to kill all those women if the police had actually given a shit about women getting killed, Donald Trump is the symptom, not the disease. No matter how much his daddy did or didn’t love him, the fact remains that without his moneyed penis, he would probably be an ineffective middle manager at a company no one has ever heard of right now.
In another section of the book, Mary Trump writes, “Donald has been institutionalized for most of his adult life, so there is no way to know how he would thrive, or even survive, on his own in the real world.” And that is the problem with entrusting the running of America to wealthy people who have no idea what it is actually like to live in America, even if they had nightly bedtime stories and lots of cuddles. The children of billionaires who read parenting books are still shitbags whose transgressions are mopped up by wads of money too, I’m sure. [Washington Post, New York Times]
- Case in point, Katie Miller, a privileged child of Florida attorneys looked at migrant families being separated at the border and could not have given less of a shit. [The Week]
- Rich person Mitch McConnell’s rich in-laws took money intended for not-rich people. [Newsweek]
- Fox News is sorry that they cropped the president accused of sex crimes out of the photo with the other rich person convicted of it. [The Guardian]
- Meanwhile, global poverty is rising. [Twitter]
- Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has tested positive for covid-19. [CNN]
- ICE is using school closures to force foreign students out of the country. [NPR]
- Having proven how adept we are at handling pandemics on our own, America is leaving the World Health Organization. [CNN]